Update: Statement from Bell's coach added:
Lowndes coach Randy McPherson's statement on Brian Bell not signing today pic.twitter.com/U87jrlYbFg— Jamie Wachter (@jlwachter) February 4, 2015
Brian Bell, a three-star linebacker recruit from Valdosta (Ga.) Lowndes County High School is not expected to sign with Florida State on National Signing Day, and sources told Tomahawk Nation that the decision between the Bells and Florida State is mutual. Bell, a 6'2, 218-pounder from a high school that has been very good to Florida State on the recruiting trail over the years also claimed offers from Georgia Tech, Clemson and Louisville, among others. It is not yet known whether Bell will sign elsewhere or sign at a later date.
Bell is one of 38 defendants named in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the parents of Kendrick Johnson, who died at Lowndes High School in January of 2013. The death was ruled accidental by local authorities and neither Bell, nor the other 37 defendants were ever charged with a crime or listed as suspects.
Florida State has two other linebacker recruits: four-star Sh'mar Kilby Lane, of Hallandale High School, and four-star Lorenzo Phillips, of East Mississippi Junior College. In all, Florida State has 19 commitments, 13 of which are rated four-stars or better, one of the highest ratios in the country.